BAY MINETTE, Ala. (WALA) – The Mobile County Constable that police say shot and killed a man at a Spanish Fort bar this weekend was in court for a bond hearing July 21.
Prosecutors say 68-year-old Larry Sheffield shot 53-year-old Jeffrey McMillian once at close range in the parking lot of Traders Lounge on the Mobile Bay Causeway early Sunday morning, July 20, 2014.
Prosecutors said during the bond hearing in front of Baldwin County District Judge Scott Taylor that Sheffield became angry after McMillian spoke to his wife inside Traders Lounge. Defense attorney Dennis Knizley said his client left the bar, started his truck and called for his wife to leave. That’s when he said McMillian approached Sheffield in the parking lot and continued arguing.
“We think that strongly suggests that this is a self defense scenario as opposed to something else that may have been suggested by law enforcement,” Knizley said.
While Knizley said his client had removed himself from the situation and was trying to leave, prosecutors said there is more to the story that will eventually come out.
“Mr. Knizley did not… he didn’t tell any untruths about that, but that’s not the whole story, and I do believe that we will see that there is a criminal case here and not self defense,” said Assistant District Attorney Christi Kolb.
Sheffield’s wife and son, along with several members of the McMillian family, were in the courtroom to hear Judge Taylor’s decision on bond. The prosecution asked for $300,000, while the defense asked for $20,000. They said Sheffield was not a flight risk, as a lifelong resident of Mobile County who’s battling cancer. Judge Taylor’s decision was $250,000 with several other conditions.
“He’s a constable. He’s employed. He was going out to a bar. He… there was nothing that his condition seemed to be keeping him from and I don’t think that should keep him from jail either,” Kolb explained.
Knizley wasn’t happy with the high bond, but wasn’t surprised either.
“It’s not unusual in this jurisdiction. In my opinion it should be less than that, but we’ll make every attempt to make that bond,” Knizley said.
Judge Taylor set forth several other conditions to Shefffield’s bond if he were to make it. First he would be under house arrest under GPS and alcohol ankle monitoring. Secondly, he can be around no guns and he can have no contact with the victim’s family.
Sheffield’s next court appearance is scheduled for September 12. He has until August 19 to request a preliminary hearing.